For the Love of Literature

Christy MacKaye Barnes


An unnoticed component of the present educational, social, and even ecological crises lies in the decline in the value accorded to what we rightly call the "humanities."  The study of the living words of great authors - Homer, Dante, Chaucer, Shakespeare, the Romantic poets, the Russian novelists - no longer forms the basis of the curriculum for the human soul.  Marginalized, politicized, and devalued, the imagination is disparaged, and young people are fed instead a monotonous diet of information, scientism, and technological know-how. These things are certainly useful and perhaps even necessary to our survival, but when they become the foundation of education, the result is an assault on what it means to be a human being. 

The present collection of essays seeks to address this situation from the point of view of Waldorf education.  Built around the work of Christy MacKaye Barnes, a master teacher of English, a poet and a practitioner of the art of speech formation (recitation), For the Love of Literature focuses on general themes - such as training of imagination, speech and poetry, and the schooling capacities through the study of great authors - as well as on particular authors and texts.

Essential reading for anyone interested in the Waldorf curriculum, For the Love of Literature should also find a place in the library of anyone interested in fine writing and in the deeper meaning of great literature. 

Steiner Books
ISBN 0-88010-416-6
325 pages
6 x 9 inches